Do you have one of these on your desk? If so, you’re in for a surprise. Nortel is long gone and soon the support for hardware will be too. But Nortel Meridians are also a sign of a bigger disease.
The fact that the Nortel Meridian is still one of the most popular business desk phones is a testament to the fact that it is outstanding hardware, but if you’ve got this phone you’re in for some very real problems in the not so distant future. In essence, the Meridian is the Windows XP of the telecom world: it’s a solid product, but your technical support is non-existent.
But is it really that bad? I mean sure it is old school, but it works right? Well yes, but if you’re using Meridians you’re using outdated and expensive technology and likely paying more for telecom service than you should be. With the hardware at the end of its life, now is a great time to make the switch over to business grade VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol). First a distinction needs to be made here between consumer grade and business grade VoIP. Consumer grade VoIP is what many of us have experience when using services like Skype; good 90% of the time, terrible 10% the rest of the time.
Business grade VoIP is a completely different animal. With business grade VoIP call quality is often better than a landline owing to the use of wideband audio when internal calls are made. In fact, the great sound quality is often jarring to end users who are accustomed to landlines which provide a much more narrow audio range, and it is not uncommon for IT to lower the quality of the calls to satisfy end users.
But the most important benefit of VoIP is cost. Moving to a fully IP based system could potentially cut your communication costs in half. And it goes beyond just local or long distance calls since you can often eliminate charges for a conference bridge, line moves, and employee relocations. With business grade VoIP this is all possible.
And to top it all off? The equipment is a fraction of the cost of the original cost of Meridians which, when coupled with the significant savings on voice service, the payback can be as be as little as 3-6 months.
The time for VoIP is now.
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